Wednesday, June 20, 2007

2007 Failed States Index

Foreign Policy journal published its annual Failed States Index. Unfortunately, African countries made up 8 of the top 10.

Many of the 'leaders' have been devastated by war. Others have been hampered by corruption and bad governance. Zimbabwe and Guinea are the most unstable countries that have not recently suffered through armed conflict. Both received poor marks for public services, factionalized elites and delegitimization of state

Perhaps the most surprising inclusion to me was Uganda at #15. Despite nagging instability in the north, Uganda is still seen by most as generally stable. Perhaps it's more wishful thinking. Uganda ranked particularly low in terms of refugees and displaced people. It also did poorly in terms of urban development, group grievance and delegitimization of state.

It's not all bad news. Liberia was the country most improved from last year's rankings. Thanks to the work of the newly elected government and national rebuilding efforts, Liberia is now more stable than 15 other African countries.

The Democratic Republic of the Congo was also one of the most improved states. Though it still ranks as the 7th most unstable country so work remains.

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